DeGette Statement in Support of the Iran Nuclear Agreement
Denver – U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette (CO-01) announced her support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action concerning Iran’s nuclear program and offered the following statement:
“After careful consideration and extensive research and outreach to experts, administration officials, and concerned citizens in the first Congressional District, I have decided to support the nuclear agreement between the United States, Iran, and our international coalition partners. This treaty is our best option to achieve the national security objectives of America and its allies.
“After years of negotiations, the United States and its key partners secured an agreement to roll back the Iranian nuclear program in exchange for halting the economic sanctions that have restricted the Iranian economy. I have been a strong supporter of our sanctions policy and its goal of extracting concessions from the Iranian regime. Thanks to the negotiations that started because of these sanctions, Iran will now be subject to strict monitoring of numerous activities and will disable much of its current infrastructure that could be used to produce a nuclear weapon.
“By our best intelligence estimates, Iran currently has the capability to produce a nuclear weapon in about two months; under the terms of the international agreement, this capability would be rolled back. If properly implemented, this agreement would increase the time period Iran would need to produce a nuclear weapon to over a year for at least a 12 to 15 year period, and would require Iran to comply with international nuclear disarmament protocols.
“The plan of action also requires 24/7 monitoring of the nuclear supply chain, provides for the lifting of sanctions only when Iran has complied with all the international inspection steps, and allows re-imposition of sanctions by the United States if Iran fails to comply. Nuclear experts have been particularly supportive of the technical details surrounding the agreement, and it increases the likelihood that the terms of the deal will be carried out as we expect.
“Since a final deal was announced, I have heard from a number of people expressing heartfelt concerns, and I have taken their reservations seriously. However, I see no realistic alternative that will offer the United States and its allies better security and diplomatic options than the negotiated deal. With a reduced nuclear threat, we will be better positioned to manage other challenges for which the Iranian regime is responsible. This agreement in no way limits the ability of the United States and our allies to act in response to Iran’s disruptive actions and human rights abuses outside the limits of the agreement.
“I am also grateful to people who have reached out to me to express their support for this agreement. We all share a desire to keep the United States and our allies safe and to achieve peace and stability in the world’s troubled regions. Making this happen will continue to challenge us all and demand our attention.
“If this agreement is fully carried out, it will mark a major change in the security and diplomatic environment in the Middle East. There is no trust involved in this effort, because our nation’s security is not built on trust; it is built on our ability to strictly verify our safety and the safety of our allies. In supporting the agreement, I will vigilantly monitor its progress and the broader regional situation. This treaty must serve our national interest for years to come, and I will hold this and future administrations to that standard.”